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Who Owns a Domain Name?

This is a common question that people ask, well the answer is the domain name should be registered to the person or business who requested the domain name.

When we (cada media Ltd) register a domain name for a client we register the domain name with their details in the “Registrant” area. We have heard tails of woe from people as they found out later that the domain name was actually registered to the web developer and not themselves. This some times can happen when a developer is registering many each day but it is usually fixed by simply changing the name to the clients name in the back end.

You can look up the ownership of a domain by going to www.whois.sc for .com domain and go to www.iedr.ie to look up .ie domain names.

Domain are bought, but in actual fact they are “registered” for a period of time, generally 1 year is normal for start up businesses. After that once they are up and running they can register the domain for a number of years typically 5 would be normal these days.

One point that was brought to our attention recently was that we have a condition in our terms and conditions of our company stating that we are the owners of domain names, hosting and websites till payment has been cleared in our accounts. This is true, we do retain the ownership of the domains till the clients has paid.

If we did not do this,  clients could leave with out paying. It’s not personal, It’s business. You can not buy a car and drive away and then 3 months later return to the garage saying that the gears are a little sticky and then be surprised once the car is impounded, Well neither can you when it comes to a website.

We own it until it’s paid for.

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